The fight card scheduled for UFC 249 took a hit Wednesday as Rose Namajunas, who was scheduled to take on Jessica Andrade in the co-main event, suddenly pulled out of the fight. It wasn't immediately clear why she pulled out, but now, the tragic circumstances surrounding her decision not to fight April 18 have been made public.
In a press release from her manager, Brian Butler, he shared that Namajunas has lost two family members due to complications from the coronavirus, and would like to spend time with her family. It is an incredibly sad development for the former UFC women's strawweight champion, and we can all fully respect her decision to seek privacy during this most difficult of times.
It is a reminder that these fighters are far from immune to the effects of this pandemic, even as Dana White does everything in his power to try and make sure UFC 249 and subsequent events all go ahead despite all the challenges. Rose can take as much time away from the Octagon as she needs; fighting in the UFC again is surely the last thing on her mind right now.
Our thoughts are with Rose Namajunas and her family during this sad time.